31 December 2008

Counting Sheep

Armed with a free sample of Ambien CR, I set out to bed last night expecting a few things:
1) Sleep
2) Hallucinations
3) That groggy feeling in the morning.

I’ve suffered from occasional insomnia since high school and after the great Amanda Doesn’t Sleep for 10 Whole Days Incident of my Senior Year, I’ve become rather paranoid about not going to bed on time. Call it my inner-dork, but I have a bedtime and darn it, I’m sticking to it. Now if only someone would tell my insides and my brains that so we could ALL WORK TOGETHER!

Right.

So, after a few weeks of having Issues with Sleep, I decided to pop 1 Ambien CR at around 8:15 (usually it takes 45 minutes for me to Feel the Effects and I wanted to be good and tired for my 9:15-9:30 bed time and I had a Really Long Day that I’ll tell you all about in a minute…).

At 8:40 I set out to nurse Chase to sleep and that’s when the hallucinations began. Oh man, when I had Conner back in 2-oh-oh-5 they gave me Real Ambien to help me get some sleep while they started the Cytotec. Two problems there: First, don’t give a pregnant woman sleeping medicine and then expect her to STAY AWAKE FOR 3 HOURS TO FILL OUT PAPER WORK THAT MIGHT BE VITAL TO HER LIVING! And secondly, The. Bed. Wouldn’t. Stop. Moving. As in full-on hallucinations I believed my bed to be on an ocean and kept asking Michael why he was moving my bed and the floors were moving and the walls were spinning and then there was That Commercial About Buying Alpacas…. So it was all really trippy and what-not. Needless to say, I’m SOOOO glad I’m not an LSD addict.


Oh yes, last night. So, I’m lying there expecting all these crazy hallucinations when suddenly the sleepy feeling sets it. But not the Drunk on Nyquil feeling I expected, but a pleasant drowsiness. Then, I began concentrating on the pillow on the other side of Chase. The way the light hit the ruffles in the pillow sham… wait… is that a sheep? Oh my! With the fan breaking up the light… and man… it looks soooo fluffy.

Thing is… I was conscious enough and informed enough about Ambien Hallucinations to KNOW that there was - IN FACT - no sheep in my bed. But it was kinda hilarious as I sat there, starring at it and all its BAH-RAM-EUWssss. I reached out to touch it, almost expecting the full on fleeciness associated with sheep to meet my fingers (no such feeling). I kept thinking my eyes would adjust and the sheep would disappear, but I just sat there starring and it stayed. No eyes, no mouth … just the entire side view of a sheep the size of my pillow.

Creepy.

After Chase was good and asleep, I came to say goodnight to Conner and Mike.

“Just so you know... if Chase wakes up it’ll be fine. He’s being protected by a fluffy lamb” I mumbled across our dark bedroom to Michael.

“You took the Ambien, didn’t you?” he replied.

And For The Record: I slept GREAT! This is the FIRST sleep-aid that I've taken that didn't make me feel like a groggy monster the next morning. I had vivid dreams, but nothing too odd (I dream alot, usual vivid and I almost always remember them anyways). Good stuff.

(Oh yes, I promised you guys news from the Cardiologist! Appointment was what wore me out yesterday, the news is good and I’ll type it up tonight! But it is interesting… so check back soon!)

28 December 2008

The Mom Gods Smiled

Oh how the Mom Gods have smiled upon me. Is as if my whole world has been sprinkled with pixie dust and powdered sugar. Sigh…

As of Christmas Adam, Conner has OFFICIALLY become a Big Boy. Oh yes, that’s right ladies and gents… *drum roll please* Conner is no longer sleeping in his “bappie”! Taadaa!

I tell you, the big trick to this whole thing was “needing some room to air it out” as my first college roommate would’ve said. We’d tried going sans diaper but I would put him in underwear (excuse me… “unnawares”) only for him to wake from nap or in the middle of the night “soaktinged” wet.

I just assumed his wee little bladder wasn’t up for the challenge and dutifully placed a diaper on him every night and before naps. Oh, but the Mom Gods had a new plan for me. They conspired a brilliant strategy to change my ways.

The night before Christmas Eve (Christmas Adam, again), I… *another drum roll* fell asleep while nursing Chase down for the night. Since I never came to say goodnight to Mike and Conner (as I normally spend another 30-45 with them before I’m kicked out asked politely to leave, the routine was broken.

Bad mommy, I know.

But that meant no diaper was ever placed on the poor child. Additionally, he had decided to “free ball” it all day and with all those magic ingredients swirled together POOF! We have no more need for nighttime diapers! Apparently, Big Boy undies felt too much like diapers so he would just wizz in them without a care. Who would’ve thunk it to leave the man parts without ..umm….restriction?
HoooRAY!!

It’s going on 6 nights now. He gets a firm reminder just before I leave.
“Conner, remember… you don’t have a diaper on so if you need to go pee what do you do??”
To which he replies “I go to da potty!”
Good boy.

And whilst we are on the subject of obedient childrens, Chase DIDN’T WAKE MOMMY FOR A 4 A.M. BOTTLE for THREE WHOLE NIGHTS IN A ROW! Oh yes, that’s right… the kid actually ate breakfast AFTER the sun rose! I mean, come on! What DID I DO to DESERVE such AWESOMESAUCE!

Sigh.

I’m pretty sure I’ve now earned some sort of Telling the Internets of Your Good Fortunes Bad Karma Jujus. But OH WELL!!

***Update 12/29*** I actually wrote this post a few days back, but changed the number of days when I posted it last night. So, the Mom Gods had plenty of time to change their minds and be mean to me. So, of course, Conner had a freaking accident last night. Oh wells. We aren't going back to the diaper and are staying "restriction free" for bed. We think he might have just had too much juice before bedtime.****

27 December 2008

The Ways of the Wicked

splash

splash, splash


SSSPLLAAAAAAASSSSHH

Me, in my ultra-firm you-probably-are-earning-yourself-a-5-minute-time-out-MISTER voice: "Conner! You got him [Chase] all wet!"

Chase crawls away from the bathtub and towards me as I'm sifting through the bathroom cabinets in search of ONE FREAKING hair band.

Conner responds in his woot-woot-aren't-you-wickedly-proud-of-my-awesomeness-because-look-at-HOW-WET-I-got-my-brother voice: "I Did! He's SOCTING WET! I GOT BATHED ALL OVA HIM!"

A pause. And he returns in with his singsongy joy ringing off the bathroom walls: "Chasey... comed back! Help me! *giggle* Help.. I needed you to comed BACK. Oooooh CHA-AASE-EY!"

Oh Kid. Chase may be young, but he's certainly no fool.

26 December 2008

Only the half of it


This is my living room after picking up ALL DAY.. Not too bad...




And this is 1/2 of the playroom after being partially straightened...




This being the other half



Now, the only major problem is that this is HALF THE GIFTS! We are still venturing to see Mike's parents on Saturday and they have a "spending problem"... sigh. What AM I GOING TO DO? The playroom is now officially and completely packed out. Nothing else, and I am NOT exaggerating, can fit. These pics don't even show the 15 toys in our master bedroom (now those pics are just outright embarrassing).

So what's a mom to do? Give away toys my children are attached to? Sell my dining room table and have a 5th 2nd playroom? Sell my children? Seriously, I'm really stressed about this. Did I mention that all THREE of the closets in the Conner's, Chase's and the playrooms are all FULL ALSO?! And that we cleaned out FOUR boxes of toys last month??!! IDEAS!!??!!

I did, however, obtain a SWEET new laptop from the Rents. Thanks Mom and Dad! Built in camera too... how scandalous. HAHAHA. Like there is anything sexy-sexy going on at my house... We'd have to do it on top of a pile of Rocketships, Choo-Choo trains, Blocks and a few select puzzle pieces.

25 December 2008

Operation: Save Christmas

This time last year, Mike and I were beyond most people's definition of exhaustion. Despite that, it was Christmas Eve and we were away from home without one single gift for Conner from "Santa" or ourselves. So, without my knowledge, Michael sprung into Super Secret Operation: Save Christmas.

We'd spoken briefly about how "it didn't really matter that the gifts were in Montgomery and we were in Birmingham and that we were extremely grateful just to be with family on Christmas and how presents don't define the Holiday and so on and so on". But, we did want some sense of normalcy. Some sign that things weren't complete chaos (although it was). And then there was Conner to whom we'd been selling this idea of magically appearing gifts for over a month now. Not that he'd known one day from the next but we had promised.

So, with no sleep, armed with his college friend Stuart, a couple of Cokes and some gnarly music (I'm sure), Mike trecked to Montgomery having spoon fed me the excuse of "I'm going to the NICU to see Chase since it is Christmas Eve". He had taken a night shift before, so I swallowed the fact that Mike would go yet another night without sleep and headed for bed myself around 11:30.

Mike arrived in Montgomery shortly after 1 a.m. and spent over an hour sorting through gifts, loading them into the car in the freezing cold. He still doesn't know how the neighbors didn't see him and call the cops... He even flushed the potties and grabbed a few essentials we had missed in our mad dash to Birmingham a few days prior. What a good little hubby he is.

"Santa" then hustled back to Birmingham (on his magical sled with reindeer, naturally), more exhausted than ever, to set up the next days Christmas Delight. By the time day broke, he was crawling into bed. His Christmas Merriment Experiment tucked under his belt.

We woke a few hours later, and Conner and I stumbled down the stairs of my mother's house to find a room full of gifts.

It took me a few minutes to realize that the gifts were in the wrapping paper I had used. The same sizes, the same shapes, the same amount of gifts that I assumed were still under our tree in Montgomery.

In a haze I asked "Did you go out and buy the same gifts? And wrap them?"
I'm a moron.
He chuckled and replied "No. Guess again."

Then it hit me, the magic of Christmas had not passed us over and there sat every single gift Michael, I and Mr. Clause had intended on giving Conner and our families.

It was truly amazing.

I will always treasure what Michael did that night. Thank you baby. You are the best Santa ever.

24 December 2008

This is HILARIOUS

Over at A Little Pregnant, Julie has mastered a remix of her "Most Annoying Noise" that just so happens to be a screech from one of her adorable children. It's absolutely. Hilarious. And. Must. Be. Listened. To. Now.

Seriously.

The first sound is just the screech, the second is a remix of some very popular annoying sounds. Not to spoil it, but you might hear a little of Ming Ming's "this is SEWIOUS" or Snoring Husbands or W (not that I oppose his presidency, but come on... you've got to admit his voice is worth laughing at!).

Enjoy dear friends.

22 December 2008

Duck, Duck, Breast

It was decided that Chase's favorite thing would be the theme for his 1st birthday bash. This was the result on a cake:




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Ok. So there's 2 things incorrect with the previous statement. First being that Pirate Ducks aren't exactly his favorite. But, I needed a large Quacker and the Pirate variety was all they had. Secondly, ducks are his second favorite thing BUT had I requested a 1st birthday cake decorated in his first love, it'd looked more like this:



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And that my friends would've been COMPLETELY inappropriate. And Publix might have even refused me the free Smash Cake:



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Ha. Just kidding. Take off the boobies and his real smash cake is there.

I sure crack me up.


All-in-all, the party was a hit. Chase sported his rocker look, which he was born for. Just kinda his thing. Rock on little man, ROCK ON!
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I was laughing to make him laugh, and although it worked, I forgot that in order to take a good picture, I should probably remember to aim correctly at my subject. But with a little cropping, I think this could turn out super cute.


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Being a Birthday Boy is HARD WORK PEOPLE!

20 December 2008

A Not-So-Cheerful Update

On this day 1 year ago, I sat in a normal hospital bed, experienced normal, painful (although more than frequent) contractions, waiting on Chase’s normal arrival. I couldn’t have been farther from reality.

By 10:55 the next morning, Chase was born and I was relieved that my journey through this pregnancy was over and I had met the baby boy I’d carried for 39 weeks. He was gorgeous. And pink. And crying. And an absolute miracle.

And then, as quickly as the joy set in the rug was ripped from beneath me and I fell.

It was this day, one year ago that I realized my perfect baby was fighting for his life. It was on this day that I was wheeled into an unfamiliar and unexpected NICU to see my newborn baby. It was on this day that I became broken.

It was that night that I learned the true meaning of fighting for your life. The nurse stood over us, muttering words like “intubate” “seized 5 times” “he’s not doing very well”. It was this night I was convinced my baby would soon die.

It was the next morning that I would leave the hospital, in tears, in pain, in mourning and drive 2 hours to Children’s Hospital to see my baby that I’d yet to even hold. Or touch. Or even talk to, warned that stimulation could induce seizures. It was the day I left the maternity ward babyless with nothing more than a cap and the most indescribable feeling of loss.

With that said, I am thankful for what God has graced us with and for Chase’s progress thus far.

But unfortunately, that’s not the end of this story.

It’s strange that I’ve struggled to come up with the words to tell you guys, my loyal readers and beloved family and friends, something that throws a wrench into Chase’s progress.

He’s not ok.

Over the past 6 months (at least), Michael and I have been in denial. Chase frequently turns blue around the mouth and nose. It’s not during times of stress, or him being cold or crying. As a matter of fact, he does it 2-5 times a day when he’s happy as a clam. It took us this long to admit that our Miracle Baby was not in the clear and far from ok.

After speaking with his Neurologist, Chase has been referred to a Pediatric Cardiologist specialist at Children’s. We’ve been told that it’s emergent and we need imaging within the next week or two. We will do our initial imaging in Montgomery and then our heart specialist in Birmingham will take over from there. They have several hypotheses, and to be completely open and honest here, none of them are especially optimistic.

So here we go again. I wanted you all to know we appreciate your prayers and thoughts. It is the most frightening thing to know we are going through this again, and that this whole thing could be tied together and more than just a fluke accident. To “know” that something is wrong with my baby is more than I can handle

We love you all and will, of course, keep you up-to-date. I think I might even post some birthday pictures on Monday, you know… if you’ve been good boys and girls.

17 December 2008

Perks of the Mom Job: The Counterpoints

Staci is apparently unhappy with my Perks of the Mom Job post, or at least she thinks I’m partially delusional. Whereas that is might be true, I do have a few complaints about SAHMommyhood aka The Job That Never Ends.

Here are a few counterpoints:
Uniform
If I had a Big Persons Job I’d be better equipped and motivated to keep up with fashion. Which would be awesome and I’d totally look just like Lauren Conrad (hurmph) or Blake Lively from Gossip Girl. But, alas, I’m just a frumpy momma with a closet full of Victoria’s Secret PINK collection sweats and soffe shorts. When I do get “dressed up” I’m choosing between a mix-match of about 3 outfits. Sigh.
And have I failed to mention the copious amount of pregnancy/post-pregnancy/nursing ensembles that invaded my closet 4 years ago and have yet to relent? I see no sign of retreat.
But the Verdict? The Uniform is still a perk of The Mom Job (I heart sweats!)

Hours
Oh Geez. Does any OTHER job require you to be “on call” 24/7, 365 for 18+ years including ALL holidays, weekends, and no-nap-benders? Didn’t THINK so.
You learn to bypass “deep sleep” in case you must handle the more than frequent “I need go pee-pee!” or “duh monsters, and duh ew-bites and duh ROBOTS and duh bubbled-beeez are scaring me!” or SOMEONE needing a bottle at 4 AM (Chase! Seriously dude, let’s eat breakfast after the sun rises, k?)
NOT TO MENTION THE FACT THAT I HAVE NOT SLEPT IN MY BED WITH MY HUSBAND WITHOUT A CHILD PRESENT SINCE EARLY JUNE OF 2005!
I currently sleep with Mr. Chase in another room b/c he nurses 3-4 times most nights (see: ecological nursing). Conner sleeps with Mike as he refuses to sleep alone and we’ve tried EVERY SINGLE METHOD SO SPARE ME THE CRITICISM PEOPLE! That’s what grandmothers are for. Ugh.
(also see: attachment parenting)
Verdict: A big fat NEGATIVE on the hours.

Nap
Can’t really complain with the exception of the following:
1) When 1 or both children won’t nap and turn into blood sucking monsters are cranky.
2) When 1 sleeps and the other is a pain in the arse only for the non-asleep child to want to sleep when the previously sleeping child to begins to wake resulting in a CRY-A-PALOOZA. Wah.
3) When the nap schedule interferes with doctors appointments, visits and errands AND
3b) When certain relatives DON’T FREAKING UNDERSTAND that The Nap Schedule is a Sacred and Precious occurrence that need not be messed with and how IMPORTANT and CRUCIAL it is to adhere to it no matter how damn special THEY THINK THEY ARE.
Whoa. Rant… oops.
Verdict: A positive with those few exceptions. What other job let’s you nap?

Lunch
I mostly stick to my previous statement with one exception: having to feed little mouths before even thinking of touching my own (now cold) food.
Verdict: Positive

Honorable Mentions
This section is devoted to crap only SAHM’s deal with day-in and day-out with the rarest of complain, blog post (giggle), mental breakdown or bottle glass of wine:
- Constant Laundry (I suppose all moms do this but, geez… THE LAUNDRY)
- Never ending dishes
- Having to pack up ½ the contents of my home just to run to the dentist
- Oh yeah, not being about to actually GO to the dentist or doctor or OB/GYN or gym or salon WITHOUT company ALL BY MY LONESOME!
- The “labeling” associated with not having a “REAL JOB” (those people are invited to a Special Event @ my home next weekend @ 2 p.m. called “Let Amanda Kick You in The Wanker”. Light refreshments will be served.)
- The Whining
- The Timeouts
- Watching hours of ueber repetitive cartoons
- The Poop
- The typos in this entry because I've been trying to type it up for two days but The hubster went out of town for work and the kids won't get off me for 3 seconds!

THE END.

P.S. – You’re welcome Staci

15 December 2008

Quick! 5-minute Speed Date!

In efforts to help ME (consider it an early Christmas gift, k?), I would like to know more about YOU!

Crazy, eh?

I'm doing a bit of research about those who visit my site and well, most of the work has been done by these kind people. And those kind people, in the course of one month, have given me a whole bunch of numbers. I usually hate numbers, but these are particularly interesting.

For instance:
I have 101 Absolute Unique Visitors (so far)
2:29 is the average amount of time you spend on my site (good for you).
56% of you use Internet Explorer and then nearly 22% of you are cooler use Safari. 3% use Chrome and I don't know what that is.
4% ACTUALLY USE DIAL-UP. Dang.
In these 4 weeks, I've had 432 page views (Yippee)
Viewers have come from 23 states.

I love facts. They make my tummy feel yummy.

But, the FACT is that numbers don't give me anything other than a Data High and a little headache. I'd like to know more about you, ESPECIALLY the LURKERS or people who come by on a whim.
Like when you googled:
"how to guarantee a failed VBAC" - Odd, I don't remember having one of those...
"did anyone wonder how Edward dealt with Bella's period?" & "Forks, WA"
"Christmas Party NICU Birmingham, AL 2008"
"Jenny Says Turn Off The Radio"
... and one of my favorites "It's ok. He can call me flower if he wants to"

So, by-chancers, lurkers, family, friends and Internets... lend me a few minutes. Fill out the following in any form you wish (sentence form, paragraph, bulletin points, a slideshow or powerpoint presentation, fling the message through your computer on a pile of dung - you pick!) and post it in the comments section. If you've got a blog that I don't know about, link it! (I'm a blog reading NERD). If you wish to remain anonymous, that's cool too... just leave any "personal info" blank. This should be exciting!

1. Do we have anything in common? Mommyhood? Two boys? Toddler and/or Screaming Banshee? SAHM? Freak of nature with a psychopathic tendency to leave the lines on the carpet when you vacuum only to swear WAR against the first person to ruin it? NICU baby?

2. Do you have a blog? Can I stalk it read it?

3. Do you leave comments? If no, why not? (It's ok, I'm bad about commenting too...)

4. Favorite post? You don't have to link it, just dig through your brains and give me a few highlights. Favorite post of YOURS (link it puh-lease)?

5. Anything you wish I'd write about more often? Anything I should shut my hole about?

6. Apple or grape jelly? Strawberry?

7. Do you use your kid's names on your blog/myspace/facebook/front door? Their real name? Should I stop using mine?

8. Favorite perfume, cologne, fragrance, smell? I heart pumpkin spice.

9. Wheresa aboutsa are yousa fromsa?

10. What's your blood type? You know, in case I you ever need a donor organ... (I'm B Negative I think...)

11. Any tips, suggestions, complaints, general love and internet hugs?

12. How'd you find my blog? If I know you in The Real World tell me how you get to it - facebook link, myspace link, direct (as in typing my URL), friend's blogroll, etc ?

Thanks gals (and maybe a guy or two). NOW GET TO WORK!

11 December 2008

They Don't Sell Boobies at the Shop-A-Snack Kid

As Chase and I crashed into bed last night, and he let out the same giggle he does every single time he knows he’s about to get some one-on-one boobie action, I sighed and said, “You are going to be hard to wean, aren’t you?”

And I know the answer to that is unreservedly yes.

He already eats like a horse anyways, whatever we have, he wants. He gets “people food” at every meal, and seems especially not-full when I’m the most hungry.

He looks at me.
I look back at him.
I motion with my fork to my plate, half-full.
He grins.
I begin shoveling the rest of my food into his mouth, even though he’s already finished a small human portion himself.
Best. Diet. Ever


He eats more than Conner in the Real Food Department (sad, I know), still takes a few 3rd food purees, 2 small formula feedings a day, and of course… the breastfeeding.

But I wouldn’t call what he does “nursing”. I’m more of a Stop-N-Fill. Or Stop-N-Feel if you will…

He gets thirsty doing all that mad crawling and cruising along the furniture, right? I can read his mind: Oh but why have apple juice when Mom’s clearly not busy? I’ll just find her, yank down her tank top and have at it. She won’t mind.

I’ve tried the whole “Stick to your Guns” routine (Guns? Buns? Boobs? It’s tit-for-tat I’d say). I’ll tell him I’m NOT a 7-11 and insist that he get some juice out a cup like a civilized 1-year-old. But nope, he ‘aint having that.

Conner was breastfed till 14-months when the 3rd or 4th case of mastitis declared itself victorious. My original intentions were to stop Chase at the 1-year mark, which would be in about 2 weeks. I don’t see that happening. I’m hoping to have him cold turkey over the next few months. Sure to be interesting…

I guess this is like potty training. He can’t go to college still wanting to snuggle up to the nearest rack of voluminous boobies. Oh. Wait…

08 December 2008

Hey Fat Man, BUTT OUT!

This weekend, the Hubby relieved me of The Mom Job for a WHOLE hour so that I could escape to Target. I shopped under a pseudonym and most wouldn't recognize me in a big red suit, a long white beard and black boots. I also had the laugh down to an art.

I only spent an hour and some change sifting through all the toys and gadgets that the boys have absolutely no room for and will probably break in a week. I managed to get out under $200 too! But I couldn't help but wonder... why do the grandparents get credit for their gifts... the aunts and uncles ....and cousins and friends ...and teachers and neighbors... they all get to say "here you go kid, look what i got just for you!"

But when it comes down to the man who goes to work every day to pay for these peices of garbage lovely gifts and the woman who carried these children for 2 separate 10 month gestations, dealt with the agonizing heartburn, the sleepless nights, the swollen feet, then birthed them through a hole the size of .. well... you know an approximation of how big it is. Tack on the crying when things went wrong or when one particular child decided to stop breathing and seize and all (no blame, Chase, no blame) and then when that woman spent weeks bleeding her insides out, cramping away, nursing and cracking and becoming engorged... and all THOSE extra sleepless nights till they are... well.. 20-something that are sure to come... why is it that THAT person (or persons) has to throw away all the "Aww... baby... ALL THIS STUFF IS FOR YOU! FROM ME!" on some hocus pocus mumbo jumbo imaginary fat dude that broke in without setting off the alarm mom and dad promised would help protect you?

I know, I know. "It's not about the presents.. but the MAGIC and their faces... and who CARES about who the gifts came from when they are HAPPY and SURPRISED and loved..." BLAH. BLAH BLAH.

BAH HUMBUG!

I don't know how long these Pixie and Fairy dust years of Santa will last because I did NOT fight Saturday mid-Holiday Target Crazies for Conner to say "Momma! Look what SANTA got ME!"

06 December 2008

Perks of the Mom Job

There are COUNTLESS reasons why being a SAHM is a slamming good time, but I decided to blog a few. In no order, here’s a list of why the mom job has it’s perks.


The Uniform
Oh man, how I’d love to of worked at Chili’s or Friday’s in my favorite jeans and a tank top. It got HOT in those thick cotton tees that were NEVER in my size (X-tiny) and BLACK JEANS. It’s so impossible to look good in black denim.
AND THE SHOES, UGH! Come on now.
Or to have worked at Copper Grill not resembling a penguin. That’d've been sweet, but probably would’ve dented my tips had I of shown up in soffe shorts and a Game Day shirt. The other jobs - Corolla, Sun & Soul, Skate Station.. all had pretty relaxed uniform policies. No skanky clothes (check-ish), cover your boobies in a modest fashion (check, sometimes), don't wear your pj's (um, check, sadly), do your hair... shower... blah.

But, as a Professional Mommy of Mr. Chase and Conner, LLC there is no required uniform. I have could do it naked (or at least close to it, I do have windows… and neighbors... and the desire to prevent my children from mental trauma). Typically, I shower in the mornings and change into a different pair of sweats, soffe's, or yoga pants and a new tank top or t-shirt. If errands need to be addressed, I fashion the latest item of clothing that doesn’t resemble the later years of high school AND doesn’t have poop or dog hair or baby dribble on it.



The Hours
I COULD complain about SOME of the hours being a mom, but it does have it perks. Like when the kids sleep in and I don’t have to wake them because the only place we have to be is Nowhere Land or His Clubhouse and those things, my lovelies, also exist in the time void that is Tivo. Woot.



Speaking of the Hours… NAP!
Oh. Nap Gods. Thank thee for thyest most specialest of gifts... ye olde Nap! I am an absolute SLAVE to the naptime. I schedule everything around it and for more than just The Selfish Reason (see #3).
1) Without nap in the morning, Chase goes to nap early in the afternoon, causing him to wake earlier in the afternoon than normal… resulting in him wanting to go to bed at 6:45 at night… which then yields an AWAKE and “happy” baby at approximately 4:45 A-FREAKING-M.
I know you stopped reading. Pick up here….
2) If Conner doesn’t take his one afternoon nap (oh so smartly of me to have them together… again Shout-Out to the Nap Gods), he is a Giant Grumpy Pain In My B-U-T-T. No getting around it. He’s there… lurking in the misty shadows of our living room. Waiting for someone to ALLOW a commercial to come on, or for his JU-JUICE to POSSIBLY be EMPTY or for his train to even THINK about RUNNING OUT OF BATTERIES or… you get my point. He’s a giant pansy without the nap.
Then there’s 3) I love having two-ish hours to blog… watch tv… read…. shave my legs…. prepare dinner… do NOTHING.... It’s just nice to have some time alone with me. I’m good company.



The Paycheck
Ok so I don’t get PAID as in BANK. But, I do get an endless supply of kisses, hugs and unexpected-from-behind-full-on tackles by a 3 ½ pound monster and his side kick of practically equal weight WHENEVER THEY PLEASE throughout the day. I also don’t have to miss out on anything in The Land of Conner and Chase. Which rocks. It makes me warm and fuzzy on the inside AND gives me blogging material. An obvious win-win.



The Lunch Break
In the Professional World, people get lunch for an hour, maybe 30 minutes, and they brown bag. Some people have access to a microwave and fridge. I, on the other hand, have my whole freaking kitchen! Gas stove, gas oven, full range of utensils, access to my HUGE pantry… etc. I can have whatever I want as long as I’ve shopped for it. If you brown bag your lunch, you are eating that whether you change your mind or not. If you can leave and grab something… well… you’d better make it snappy. I’ve been known to think about lunch since breakfast and can figure some way to get What I Want before the clock strikes 12 (pm…) and my Little Princes turn to pumpkins. It’s definitely a plus in my book. But what can I say… I’m such a Food Whore.


Key points here, obviously, but I love being a Working from Home Without Monetary Benefit Momma *snort*

05 December 2008

ShareYourStory.org

A few things spark The Dark Place Inside that dealt with Chase's NICU experience seeing as it was this time last year.

Putting up our Christmas tree made me cry, I know... pitiful. It was remembering not having our home on Christmas, spending it differently than originally planned, without Chase, without Conner half the day.... in the NICU. It felt like I was being punished or robbed... either way it didn't feel like anything needed to be celebrated. After we finally came home, and Christmas had passed, I left the tree and all the decorations out till the end of January and not because I'm lazy (which I am) but because my family didn't get to enjoy them the way they should've.

All-in-all, it's going to be a tid bit bumpy this holiday season.

Then, I received an email yesterday from the March of Dimes. As most of you know, Chase was full-term and the March of Dimes mostly deals with raising awareness of premature births and birth defects but they also provide a whole community for parents dealing with the horror that is the NICU experience.

Share Your Story is a way for those of us who've had to go through the motions of being in the NICU, dealing with the stress that becomes your companion and everything afterwards - from doctors appointments to getting past it and getting on with life.

I am eternally grateful that Chase is doing so well and that I am not in the shoes of many of these parents. But, I did share some time with many of them and those like them, and will forever feel strong connections to those touched by the experience both similar and not.

I've shared my story through the March of Dimes and if you happen upon this blog for similar reasons, I encourage you to do the same. It's a step in healing that can't be matched.

03 December 2008

Give a little

In the interest of all that is product reviews/tips/mommy-related mayhem and all that jazz associated with being a mom who "works from home without pay" or WFHWP (seriously), here's a yummy lemon-scented tip for clean-up time!

Using a large microwavable bowl (I prefer my 1 quart Pyrex glass measuring cup), place 3-4 cups of hot water and at least 1 cup of lemon juice (I buy in bulk, so I have tons to spare) in the microwave for 5-6 minutes (a little longer for those really dirty appliances, like moi). After it does it's biznas, allow the container to sit in the microwave for at least a minute. Remove (CAREFULLY AS IT WILL BE PIPPING HOT) and immediately use a damp sponge or paper towel to wipe out the microwave. The years... months?... weeks worth of caked on spaghetti and reheated leftovers come off without an ounce of perspiration!

Yay to that!

Plus, it leaves your microwave smelling of fresh lemon-ey goodness! I prefer to keep the door open for a bit to let the smell waft through my kitchen and I also leave the used lemon-water out for fragrance purposes too! I also like to pour the leftovers into the toilet as it does freshen the potty room a bit too. That might be a little odd, but who cares!??

Go forth and clean thy kitchen!

02 December 2008

Is this thing on?

I'd apologize to my readers, but since I only have 10 and you guys NEVER LEAVE ME COMMENT LOVE I'll just forego the comforting snugglies and fork over the excuse for neglecting my blog.

I. Am. Obsessed. With. Twilight.

I'm on the 4th book now and if Mike doesn't hurry the heck up, I'm considering shipping him to Forks, WA just to tease the baby vamps. Once he's finished, I'll get the Whole Book To Myself!! Battle lines have been drawn. He has 24 hours to surrender The Goods.

I haven't watched tv in 10 days. I know! Right? Except for House and the Iron Bowl. (I mean, don't hate the legacy.... Got twelve?? 36-0 BABY!.. etc etc).

I'm also in a writing rock/hard place. I want MORE from blogging but that means TIME and MONEY. Oh, and a GAMEPLAN. And a computer that worked would help... (and a chance and a prayer and... [indistinct grumbling])

Blah blah yadda yadda etc etc. The end.

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BirminghamMommy